Bionic Fingertip Helps Amputees Identify the Difference Between Smooth and Rough Surfaces

By: | March 13th, 2016

Hillary Sanctuary / EPFL

Researchers from Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne have successfully created a bionic fingertip reportedly capable of helping amputees feel the different sensations between rough and smooth surfaces.

The bionic fingertip utilizes a myriad of sensors capable of identifying undulations in the surface beneath them, where that physical sensation or touch is then translated into electric signals for the user.

Incredibly, the signals are actually attached to the nerves located right above wherever the amputation took place.

Amputee Dennis Aabo Sørensen, who tested out the bionic fingertip, was extremely accurate when it came to differentiating between smooth and rough textured samples, to the tune of a 96% success rate.

Obviously, this bionic fingertip technology looks promising for amputees, but researchers also believe it could make an impact in the robotics industry.

Marshall Smith

Technology, engineering, and design enthusiast.

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